I remember as a child getting to go to McDonald’s and eating a regular hamburger and small fries; it was a huge treat for me as it almost never happened.
Mom and Dad didn’t have a lot of money. They had to make what they did have stretch as far as they could, so eating at restaurants almost never happened.
When my sisters and I got a little older, we would go as a group once a month with other young people from our church and sing in a local nursing home for the residents. Afterward, our friend’s dad would sometimes take us to the local A & W restaurant for a root beer, and at least once he took us to a store to get an ice cream cone. I specifically remember that time because he offered me any flavor I wanted, and I said vanilla. I think that humored him a bit, and he kindly asked was I sure that was the flavor I wanted. Yes, it was!
When I was 16, and I felt God calling me to be a missionary, I had no problem saying yes. He had been preparing me for my whole life.
Perhaps He still is.
I went to Africa, and I don’t remember exactly when it happened, but somewhere along the line, being moved to compassion by the poverty I saw and being considered to be rich in comparison changed me.
Whatever tiny childhood hopes I’d had for finding sunken treasure at sea or youthful wishes that I could win big in a TV game show disappeared for good.
As I’ve gotten older, though, I’ve come to feel a need for more comforts, and too often I’ve overindulged. I believe God has been trying to remind me in the last few months that I should be trying harder to make a difference in the lives of others, to show them the love of God and to help others find hope in Jesus.
Could it really be a coincidence that the year that helps us realize how blind and uncaring we’ve been is 2020, the same numbers as for perfect eyesight?
Perhaps most of us are in the same boat with this. Perhaps we want too much for ourselves without thinking about how we should be “loving others as ourselves”. We may not see the need nearby, in our own neighborhood, but in this age where we can search for a plethora of topics via the internet, we have no excuse not to make an effort to try and see how we can help others in need.
We want to excuse ourselves. I’ve heard it before from Christians that God doesn’t have a problem with us being rich. That’s true, I suppose, as long as we are sharing with the poor and not hoarding it for ourselves.
But could it be that we actually have been listening to the voice of the culture that surrounds us instead of to the Holy Spirit of God? It’s certainly worth searching our hearts. I’m reminded of Jesus’ words to one of the churches in Revelation:
“The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God, says this:
‘I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. ‘So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. ‘Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see. ‘Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent. ‘Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.” Revelation 3:14b-20
Yes, He still loves us. He wants to help us see, but we must first recognize our blindness and seek His forgiveness and healing through the blood of Jesus Christ.
I used to think that the “Behold I stand at the door” verse was only for unbelievers, but it was actually spoken to the church, that is to all believers in Christ. Will we let Him in?
How many of us are actually ardently seeking hard after pleasing God and Him alone? If we’re not, then He says we need to repent so we can dine with Him.
I wonder what we’ll eat together, sitting at that table, just the two of us? Perhaps if we are just enjoying His company, we might be content to have a regular hamburger and small fries or a cold root beer or vanilla ice cream? What do you think?
Here’s a link to an organization I discovered recently that digs wells or does whatever a community needs to get them water, and they share with them the love of God through His word, also.
- Neverthirst Check it out.
- Others that I’ve found to be good are Samaritan’s Purse and Prison Fellowship, which includes Angel Tree.
Today I’m thankful that Jesus wants to be intimate with His children.
I’m thankful that He wants to dine with me.
I’m thankful that He gives me the opportunity to share with others.
I’m thankful that His word is so clear about these things and that He uses it to speak to our hearts.
What about you? How have you helped the needy in the past? How is God moving in your heart about sharing with others? Do you want to be intimate with Jesus? Did you know He wants to dine with you? What would you eat if you were having dinner with Jesus?
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